I'm working on an order form for you guys to order signed books.
I am also plotting a new sci-fi story but I am having trouble with inspiration.
Please bear with me at this time as I'm battling my invisible illnesses.
Wednesday, April 18, 2018
Wednesday, February 14, 2018
Monday, January 29, 2018
**Book to be released March 31st**
Pre-Arthurian Historical Fantasy / British Editing / Graphic
Serving as a Brittunculi Legionnaire in the very occupation he hates the most, Trystian has yet to labour through some of the hardest lessons of life.
Fourteen years of his youth have been conscripted by the deceitful Legatus Legionis Gallus through impossible choices forced upon him; that time is gone, but now, so are the Romans. Free after so long, Trystian’s only desire is to go home— to the family he fears has been destroyed, even after he’d remained dutifully under the regime, and to the one with whom he left his heart.
In a time when so few dare to pray to her any longer, he hopes his devotion to his Goddess is strong enough to wake her from the slumbers of abandonment, so that she may see him through his ultimate and most brutal path yet ahead. The one that will finally return him home. It is this journey, at the most dismal point in his life, which forces him to reconcile with his past, and make peace with the choices that had been made for him long ago.
It’d started when he’d been a young man, struggling with how to contain his discontent of the Roman occupation of Briton so as not to shame his father. Nevertheless, not even the receding Roman reign had come soon enough for Trystian. But back home in Penrith, Cumbria, the ominous Roman presence wasn’t the only thing that caused Trystian a troubled mind. As a young man coming of age, he found there were some things he didn’t have in common with other young men, and an encounter with a secret Welsh noble with exotic eastern features both terrified and excited Trystian. However, life for Trystian wasn’t just his own or simple enough for him to have the time he had wished for to explore. Such feelings, stirring within him— they remained untouched as he was tutored and conditioned to be something greater for their people and the family’s future.
After all the misfortune and misery of the past, Trystian now forges towards a future he never once imagined as his fate. For the Goddess never truly abandons her children born from the blessed rites of the Calan Mai.
For Trystian Pendragon isn’t just high born, he is Sliocht na Péiste— “born of the dragon”— and his future belongs to the Goddess and to the destiny of the royal Pendragon bloodline. Survive it all, and the Goddess Morrighan just might bless him with a reunified bond he’d once made within the Anáil Dhragain.
Stephan [pronounced: stef-fahn] is a relocated Nova Scotian who now lives in the sunshine states of the US where he spends most of his time writing out on the beach and tending to his accidental vegetable garden. He’s always been known to create vividly wild stores since he was a kid without any desires of publishing. Now, after retiring from the concert industry, his longtime affair of writing as a favorite pastime has now become a new profession.
Being a Native American Siksika of mix blood (mixed culture as well), it was inevitable that everything else in his design would turn out to be a mix bag of hosh-posh influences thrown into a life time of nerdy-love for the studies into ancient cultures and religions. From his Indian heritage and Mariners family history, to his own self-expressions of gothic punk and natural science, plus a little bit of everything he’s ever explored and sampled, always managing to avoid falling into any form of stereo type’s definition. It’s no wonder, when it comes to his writing, he’s a rule breaker. Even when it comes to his two favorite genres: Post-Apocalyptic Dark Fantasy and Historical Fantasy.
But in the end, oh the places we will go.
Trystian hadn’t even sunk his spoon into the plum pie when Gorthelyk spoke up, his comment changing the mood of all inside the banquet hall as he stood.
“It’s time,” he spoke with a crackling baritone of certainty.
Trystian didn’t know what time it was, but he wasn’t about to risk not getting a bite of his celebration pie. He quickly shovelled a heaping spoonful of cooked fruit into his mouth. The complex flavours of both sweet and tart exploded over his tongue in a warm compote and soft pastry crust. He wolfed several more down, not having even the pleasure of fully savouring each bite, before Gorthelyk and Uther were coming up from the table, waving the rest of the brothers to join them. Eudeyrn and Brenhin stepped in and pried Trystian from his seat. Arthwys lingered back a few steps, yet close enough so to not get scrutinized for not participating.
Trystian merely stared back greedily at his pie as he was lured away. “Wait!” he shouted, but there seemed to be no disputing as his brothers dragged him off. He hardly felt his cloak being tossed over his shoulders as he desperately craned around to see what was to become of his treat. Through a small gap between two of his brothers, he spotted Éadaoin swatting someone away and then passing his pie back to Ealish. And then he was taken out of the banquet hall. His pie lost to the mercy of who knew, but he felt a small amount of relief that at least some effort was being put into guarding it. He could only pray to the Goddess, hoping such confections worthy of deity chores, and she would bless them to be successful.
Like a swarm of wasps, his brothers and friends swooped in and Trystian was shuffled out of the castle, across the courtyard and around back to the old, black-died roundhouse tucked away behind the stables. It was Gorthelyk’s for when the castle life was too much to sate his need for solace. For his prayer sessions. And tonight, for the ceremony of branding.
There was no doubt about their intentions when Trystian saw the dish of indigo ink and the hammer pin next to it.
As Trystian was pushed down into the paddle seat and his arm stripped of his sleeve, Eudeyrn passed over a tankard of something far stronger than wine.
“Here, little brother. Drink up. You’re gonna need it.” He winced as his eyes dropped to the stick with the cluster of needle-like pins at one end, along with a thin hair-bone needle and strand of lamb’s wool thread.
Trystian noticed too, then turned up the hollowed-out horn, nearly choking on the brew, which burned his throat. But it was who stood across from him that caught his attention now. The cut into the brooding emotion so evident, it seemed to blot out everything else for a few heartbeats reiteratively.
He stood at the door, skulking. Looking ever angrier now than he did inside the hall.
The tankard was pushed back into Trystian’s hands, heavy once more with the juice being fed to him. If he drank, he did so only by the urgency of someone guiding him as Trystian remained fixated on Arthwys. Why was he not happy like the others? But that, too, was interrupted when Trystian felt the first run of prickling needle cluster tapped into his skin from a second wand, that when struck against the needle mounted stick with rapid succession, the smarting pointy pain came with it. He’d forgotten how much the markings smarted, and he now cared nothing about what was haunting his brother. “Eudeyrn? You got any more of that swill?” Trystian gritted the request through his teeth, trying his best not to jerk his hand away as the Druis remained constant and focused on his work, creating the tattoo marking on Trystian’s right hand with the dragon all Pendragons wore. Trystian’s attention fell to the dragon’s head on Eudeyrn’s hand, then to Uther’s. They all wore it, and now he would, too. His heart swelled all the more than it already had that he didn’t even notice when Arthwys took off.
Except the needles. Though he were still feeling and he turned the tankard up to his lips with every intention of draining it.
“Easy there, little brother, this will creep up on you. You’ll not want too much,” Uther warned.
Trystian hissed through his teeth to what felt like the bones in his hand getting a fair share of ink as did his skin, “Don’t be so sure.”
“Oh, he is sure. It’s no swill,” Eudeyrn heeded.
“What is it then?”
“Dragon’s brew,” Uther answered with a teasing curl his lips.
“It lets you see them when the dragons are called upon,” Eudeyrn added.
The conversation was broken when someone not within the roundhouse began to chant with a guttural voice. “Anál nathrach, orth’ bháis’s bethad, do chél dénmha.”
It didn’t take a mage for Trystian to realize the chant was summoning something. “Who is outside?” he asked.
“Hush,” Madron scolded then mumbled something under his breath along with the chant that continued beyond the walls, and then held a small turtle shell of the same brew to Gorthelyk, tipping it carefully against his lips.
Trystian watched their Druis drink with nary a pause to his work of torture and inky binding. He swallowed hard then looked to his brothers for explanation.
“Seeing dragons is one thing, little brother, but drink too much and they might burn you. You’ll not want that to happen.”
The warning came from Uther, but Trystian didn’t see him. The room was already becoming pitched in darkness, or so it seemed. The flickering glow of candles stretching up the walls of the round house. Someone behind him began tamping away on a small hand drum, joined in with a fonn sang by a bard who Trystian hadn’t even noticed had joined them.
Gorthelyk started to mutter. Using a gritty and throaty dialect Trystian didn’t know. Only the one line of making still be chanted outside. Though forbidden to speak it, they all knew that one. Anál nathrach, orth’ bháis’s bethad, do chél dénmha— Serpent's breath, charm of death and life, thy omen of making.
Trystian’s head began to swim, making the room tilt to one side, then another. The song and drum beat surrounding him. It became one with the shadows and began to dance around him. Slow and purposeful to match with the beat of the drum. The swimming shadows began to stretch up the walls and overhead until they took the outlined shape of a dragon’s head.
A cool breeze, brushed his skin. Trystian managed to tear away from the dragon-shadow that’d come to watch and found his father, who too, had come to witness his son become a man of the dragon. Standing like an effigy of stern strength though he was oddly covered in a layer of sweat and his breath heaved like a man who’d run across the field. It didn’t lesson who he was a bit. Trystian doubted there was any other man in all of Briton or the isles, or even the big lands of the Gaul’s, who could defeat or outwit his father. Even as Trystian watched, when the smoking body of the beast with them reared its head, its horns piercing through the hide lining the thatch above, their father never flinched.
Neither did Trystian.
He wasn’t afraid. The dragon had answered the call of the Pendragon Lord. It was here to honour Trystian, not devour him.
And then Trystian saw the mighty rack of the great stag appear in shadow next. Just as the dragon had first appeared. Standing tall like his father. An eerie greenish grey glow from some magical force outlined its frame and then the pain Trystian felt— vanished.
PRE-ORDER BUY LINK – Smashwords https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/785328
goodreads link https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/15436483.Stephan_Knox